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to follow the latest developments out of the middle east. israel and hamas exchanging more fire. the defense forces claiming to have targeted 100 gaza sites. the u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton is on her way to the middle east for talks with officials in a bid to try to end the deadly crisis. we've been watching oil prices, as well. and after sharp gains yesterday, you can see oil prices pulling back about 27 cents, still just about $89 for wti crude. we will have a live report from our nbc colleagues on the ground in the middle east coming up in the next half hour. >>> let's talk about some of the main market events of the morning. actually today fed chairman ben bernanke's speech at the economics sclub of new york is coming up at 12:15 eastern time. traders will be listening no any comments on the central bank's operation twist program and discussions about changing how the fed communicates about interest rates. operation twist expires next month. and there is some speculation the fed will continue making asset purchases by expanding the size of its $40 billion a month quantitate o
organization by the united states because it continues to refuse to recognize israel as a state. the united states has a policy of not negotiating with terrorist organizations. that's why she's not speaking with anyone in gaza. her visit comes hours after a meeting with israeli officials that lasted late into the night. >>> let's take a look at the markets this morning. we already showed you the futures. they are down slightly. dow futures down by about 23 points. in europe this morning, you'll see that -- also, by the way, a lot happened yesterday. ben bernanke started talking, when he raised some concerns about the fiscal cliff, that once again put pressure on the markets. that's when things turned down yesterday. you'll see in europe, barely budging at this point. in france, the cac is up by about a point. the ftse is down by less than five points. in germany, the dax is up by less than three points. overnight in asia, you'll see that in japan, the nikkei was up by about .8 of a percent. the shanghai composite up by about 1%. the hang seng was up by 1.4%. oil prices also up slightly, up
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